The South African Federation of Trade Unions fully supports the overwhelming rejection of the latest offer from the employers by the bus workers’ unions.
SAFTU urges all workers to continue and intensify their solidarity action in support of their fellow workers who are in the fourth week of a strike against intransigent employers.
This is a critical struggle not just for workers in the bus sector, in SATAWU, TAWUSA, NUMSA, TOWU and TASWU, but for for the whole South African working class, who face a concerted offensive by bosses who think they have the upper hand against the workers. They must be proved wrong!
The unions’ case for increased pay and better conditions is absolutely justified and so is their call for any agreement to be backdated to reflect the date when the new wage agreement was supposed to take effect, which in this case is 1st April 2018, and not from the date of signing, as employers are now demanding.
As the unions say in their statement: “We reject the attitude of the employers regarding the effective date of the agreement. We believe that they are provoking our members unnecessarily. We want to end the strike because we recognise that it is in the best interests of our members and the community at large. For everyday that this strike drags on, workers suffer because of the ‘no work, no pay’ policy”.
SAFTU congratulates and thanks the workers for being prepared to suffer hardship for themselves and their families in order to escape from poverty and exploitation, and for their discipline and courage throughout the strike.
The federation urges all unions and progressive civil society formations to:
- Send messages of support to the union leading the strike.
- Join the striking workers outside bus depots.
- Prepare for solidarity action in the event that the employers refuse to settle.
Solidarity for ever, when the workers unite and fight!
An injury to one is an injury to all!